While most businesses have had to shut their doors due to COVID-19, those working in the health care sector are currently overwhelmed. As the Co-Founder of HomeAssist Home Health Services, Frank De-Levi has witnessed a significant increase in demand since the start of the pandemic.
Frank De-Levi and his wife Kristina both have personal experiences with home health care—it is one of the primary reasons they founded HomeAssist Home Health Services. After seeing both grandparents receive extensive care in the safety of their home, Frank and Kristina De-Levi decided to start their own business to help others.
With deep compassion for the elderly and patients who require additional elements of safety at home, both Frank and his wife took their unique skill sets and experiences and applied them to their business. He is here to talk about the impact that COVID-19 has had on their industry, how he is coping, and advice for those currently struggling.
How has your industry been impacted regarding COVID-19?
Home health care has become a major focus during the pandemic, forcing many to rethink existing structures and evaluate whether they still work for them. As our primary goal prior to the pandemic was to provide safe, healthy, and meaningful experiences for clients, our entire industry has not changed very much. The only difference is an increase in overall demand as clients seek other ways to engage with health care providers.
What keeps you motivated during this time at home?
People need our services now more than ever. I am deeply motivated by the positive feedback and commentary we receive from our clients. At-home health care has become a more viable option for so many patients over the past couple of years. Not only do we provide a necessary service at a lower cost, but we pay special attention to every possible detail. Our clients do not need to worry about different parts of their health care plan communicating with one another—we do everything for them. We can help alleviate a stressful and overwhelming process for patients. Having a clear purpose is a great motivator, and I am lucky to be doing this work.
Suggestions of good ways others can cope during this time.
If you can, take time to reflect and slow down. We have become so accustomed to living in a fast-paced environment that we have forgotten how to relax. Relaxing means different things for different people on different days. Some days you might want to take a bath, draw, cook, or meditate. Disconnect from screens whenever you can. The past year has been a ‘news heavy’ year, and it is important to take time to disconnect so that the anxiety of the times doesn’t start to overwhelm us on a personal level. Take care of yourself so that you can take care of others.
What does your typical day look like now versus prior to social isolation?
In all honesty, my day looks very much the same as it did prior to lockdown. The only difference is that I now spend most of my day wearing a mask and ensuring that all of my staff adhere to the new safety protocols. Unlike other industries that have been shut down as a result of the pandemic, health care has only become more strained. I work very hard to stay connected with our client’s health care practitioners who are under immense pressure right now. With less time spent traveling, I have had the opportunity to connect with old hobbies and spend time with my wife.
What advice would you give to fellow businesses who may be struggling during COVID-19?
Businesses need to address how their customers’ needs have changed. When any new entrepreneur starts a business, they begin by addressing the needs of their target demographic. Entire landscapes and industries have changed, forcing businesses to go through this process again. If you’re not sure what their needs are, ask. If COVID-19 has meant you have to change your entire business model, keep an open mind to this possibility. For example, some restaurants have started providing ‘at home meal kits’, taking advantage of their already existing supply chains but altering the format to suit the needs of their clients. Think outside of the box—anything is possible.
Do you think a work and life balance is important and how difficult is it in these circumstances?
Absolutely it is important. While the work that I do with HomeAssist Home Health Services is meaningful, engaged, and vital, the relationships I have with my loved ones and myself are important priorities too. The key is scheduling in time for everything that matters to you. From a client meeting to a few hours of alone time, treat both with the same importance.
What are some of the lessons you have already learned from having to work remotely and tips you can give to the readers?
I have learned to stay on track by putting my phone in another room and listening intuitively to when I need to take a break. While the demands of the day often unfold upon you in an office environment, you can listen more intuitively to your own needs when you work remotely. Be willing to experiment with your environment and figure out what works for you.
What is one piece of advice that is getting you through these current times?
‘This too shall pass.’ While I know that this advice often applies to difficult times, it applies to good times as well. No matter what you are going through, you can solace in the fact that it is temporary or allow yourself to enjoy what you can because it is temporary. I feel lucky to be in a position where I do not have to worry about where my next meal is coming from, so even though I feel overwhelmed at work, I have to remember to be grateful for what I have. Nothing is permanent in this life, so enjoy this moment as best you can.
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